Jim DeMint Isn't Endorsing Anyone Yet

Reporting on Politics and Policy.
Oct. 17 2011 10:12 AM

Jim DeMint Isn't Endorsing Anyone Yet

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WASHINGTON, DC - OCTOBER 05: Along with other lawmakers, U.S. Sen. Jim DeMint (R-SC) (L) attends a news conference October 5, 2011 on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC. Approximately 1.6 million signatures collected on petitions urging a repeal of Obama health-care reform were delivered to the Hill at the press conference. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)

Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images

David Drucker causes a Monday ruckus with this article about Sen. Jim DeMint's possible endorsement of Mitt Romney. What do I mean by possible? Why the eyebrow-raise and the italics? Check out that sourcing!

David Weigel David Weigel

David Weigel is a Slate political reporter. 

Mitt Romney is the favorite to receive Sen. Jim DeMint's (R-S.C.) much-sought-after endorsement in the race for the Republican presidential nomination, according to knowledgeable GOP sources.
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Source: Sources.

Republican operatives familiar with the DeMint-Romney relationship and privy to the conservative Senator's private assessment of the GOP field believe Romney is the most likely candidate to receive the backing of the tea party favorite.

Source: Operatives.

"Jim is far more likely to endorse Mitt than anyone else currently in the race," a Republican with South Carolina ties said. "Jim is a business guy and that's his background. He's not really the good ol' boy conservative type. So Mitt in a lot of ways is a more comfortable fit for him."

Source: A Republican. Do we know what his presidential loyalties are? We do not know. All we know are some facts we already knew: That Jim DeMint endorsed Romney in 2007, that Romney is a businessman. (So is Herman Cain.)

Unsurpisingly, DeMint's staff is blasting the story with a firehose. "That story is a fabrication made up of anonymous sources that obviously have no clue what Senator DeMint is thinking," says the senator's spokesman Wesley Denton. "He has said over and over again that he is not leaning toward any candidate yet and may end up not endorsing in the presidential race."

Last time I poked around on this, I asked DeMint whether Romney's health care plan -- something that makes him toxic to Tea Party groups like FreedomWorks -- changed the calculus. Read what he said.

David Weigel is a Slate political reporter.